'The Great Director'
David Mitton has been credited as the creative heart and soul of Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends, being the person who suggested shooting the series as a Live Action Model Animation and for him and his crew to ‘play at trains’. For twenty years, David played the role of Director and Producer for the series, and even directed the model unit for Britt Allcroft throughout the shooting of Thomas and The Magic Railroad in 1999.
As with Britt Allcroft’s co-creation of Shining Time Station, in 1989, David co-created and produced TUGS, a live-action model animation series rooted in a 1920s Harbour, alongside his then business partner, Robert D. Cardona as part of their company, Clearwater Features.
He then returned to Thomas in 1991, and began co-writing original scripts with Britt Allcroft - a trend which continued until the 5th Television Series. After this, scripts fell to individual writers, however, David was seen to provide the basis for some story material throughout the 6th Series, making two contributions himself over the 6th and 7th Series, prior to leaving the series in 2003, following the HIT Entertainment takeover.
After his depature, David began working with Gerry Anderson legend and personal friend, David Lane, with their own new company Pineapple Squared Entertainment where he acted as Creative Director for several properties. Between 2006 and 2008, David shared correspodence with Sodor Island Forums, and gave great insight into his time on the set of Thomas and TUGS. However, in May 2008, prior to the launch of their production, Adventures On Orsum Island, David suffered a heart-attack and died soon after. We are honoured to have had the time to speak to him, and even consider him a friend.